Inside Politics

NDPWatch: Convention policy resolutions

Less than a week after the Conservative Party wrapped up its convention and post-election celebration in Ottawa, the NDP meets in Vancouver to the same purpose -- and mark the 50th anniversary of the party's formation.

As with the Conservatives, the meeting is an opportunity to debate -- and if you are the party leadership, carefully manage -- ideas and proposals for the party's policy direction and constitution.

You can read the full list of resolutions here, but here are two that jump out immediately:

7-04-11 Resolution Rejecting a Merger with Liberal Party
Submitted by Toronto Centre
BE IT RESOLVED THAT the New Democratic Party reject any proposals to merge with the Liberal Party. BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED THAT the Party extend a warm welcome to all former Liberal supporters who wish to join the genuine anti-Conservative opposition - the NDP.

(Note the resolution originates in interim Liberal leader Bob Rae's backyard.)

and

7-01-11 Resolution to Adopt a New Constitutional Preamble
Submitted by Resolutions Committee
BE IT RESOLVED THAT the existing Preamble to the Constitution be deleted;

"The New Democratic Party believes that he social, economic and political progress of Canada can be assured only by the application of socialist principles to government and the administration of public affairs.

The principles of democratic socialism can be briefly defined as:

• That the production and distribution of goods and services shall be directed to meeting the social and individual needs of people within a sustainable environment and economy and not to the making of profit;

• To modify and control the operations of the monopolistic and distributive organizations through economic and social planning. Towards these ends and where necessary the extension of the principle of social ownership;

• The New Democratic Part holds firm to the belief that he dignity and freedom of the individual is a basic right that must be maintained and extended; and

• The New Democratic Party is proud to be associated with the democratic socialist parties of the world and to share the struggle for peace, international cooperation and the abolition of poverty. "

And the resolution goes on to propose wording that replaces "democratic socialism" and "democratic socialist parties of the world" with "social democratic principles" and "allies around the world working for international peace and justice," and drops reference to "economic and social planning."

It includes a commitment to "economic and social equality, individual freedom and responsibility, and democratic rights of citizens" and the elimination of poverty and adds: "ensuring that wealth and power are in the hands of the many and not the few."

Read the full list of resolutions.
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